Dec 31, 2018
The food regulator of India, Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has taken firm steps to ban food packed in plastic, magazines and newspapers. The ban is imposed after survey showed the risk on health showed by the plastic and newsprint inks and dyes. The regulation with new set of food packaging has been formulated which will be applicable by 1st of July 2019.
While speaking to media, Pawan Agarwal, CEO, FSSAI said, “The packaging of food regulations have been sent for publishing and will raise the bar for food safety in India. Packaging is an integral part of the process and we have framed regulations to adhere to it.” The report further adds that these new regulations have swap the old Food Safety and Standards (Packaging and Labelling) Regulations, 2011.
FSSAI has suggested packaging alternatives instead of newspapers and plastic. “The surveys that we commissioned have shown that the packaging material used by the organized sector is largely safe but it’s the unorganised sector that is a cause for concern for us, especially loose packaging material,” added Agarwal.
Setting up of new regulations will also prohibit packaging material made of recycled plastic, loose packaging such as coloured and black carry bags, disposable containers etc.. Another major issue is of sweet boxes, that are coloured or aluminium-coated, while in production often gets chemically contaminated.
National survey of food packaging material conducted by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) found 80% of food samples packed in coloured carry bags, 59% in black carry bags and over 24% in aluminium coated disposable containers and 21% in sweet boxes were chemically contaminated.
“The new packaging regulation would raise the bar of food safety in India to the next level. The implementation of the rules may be a challenge in the unorganised sector and therefore, we have given sufficient lead time before the regulations come into force,” FSSAI chief executive Pawan Agarwal said.
He added,”The chief objective of packaging is to protect the food contents from microbiological, chemical, physical and atmospheric contamination and preserve the food. Food businesses shall have to comply with the new regulations by July 1, 2019”, Agarwal said.